Uncle Ruckus (born 1939) is a fictional self-hating African American white supremacist from the comic strip and animated television series The Boondocks. An overweight, homely man with a glass eye, he enjoys disassociating himself from other African Americans as much as possible, and is outspoken in his support of what Huey calls the "white supremacist power structure." He is voiced by Gary Anthony Williams.
Uncle Ruckus's name is a reference to Uncle Remus or Uncle Tom. He is the darkest-skinned character on the show. His name is also a reference to Amos Rucker, an African-American United Confederate Veterans member, who allegedly wanted to stay a slave after the United States Civil War. A "ruckus" is also the act of making a noisy disturbance, something which Uncle Ruckus is almost always sure to do.
Uncle Ruckus (no relation) is repellent in appearance, behavior, and attitude. He has an intense hatred of anything pertaining to black people, and goes out of his way to free himself from this identity; Ruckus claims God says the path to forgiveness for being black is to rebuke your own race. Ruckus champions the small traces of French,à or Irish ancestry he claims to have (though a DNA test showed he was "102%" African descent "with a 2% margin of error", but it was later shown that he was 50.07% white in the same show), and wishes that all black people were still enslaved. He prattles white supremacist rhetoric and calls Michael Jackson (who claimed to have suffered from the pigmentational skin changing disorder vitiligo) a "lucky bastard", as he no longer looks black. Ruckus claims that he himself has "re"-vitiligo, to explain his own skin tone. During the Civil Rights Movement, he protested against Martin Luther King's marches, and would occasionally throw bricks at him, but usually missed. Ruckus served on a jury in 1957 (making him a minimum of 70 circa 2009) in Tennessee that helped convict a blind black man of killing three white girls. In spite of being blind, the African American man supposedly shot the three with a Winchester rifle from about 50 yards away. (Ruckus is the only black person on the otherwise all white jury, in what is a Jim Crow courtroom.) During his first encounter with the Freemans, Ruckus sings Don't Trust Them New Niggas Over There at a garden party, though he socializes freely with the Freemans thereafter. In fact, Robert Freeman and Thomas Lancaster Dubois are probably the only people on the show who could be considered friendly to Uncle Ruckus. Ruckus believes firmly in racially insensitive assaults, hurling invectives of prejudice and hatred to all things black. On being asked if he supported the use of the word "nigga," Ruckus says: "No I don't think they should use it. You know why? Because they're used to it. Just like the crops that rob the soil of its fertile nutrients, you have to rotate your use of racist words. There are a host of other perfectly acceptable words: spade, porch monkey, jiggaboo. The next time you wanna call a darkie a nigga, call the coon a jungle bunny instead."
Ruckus adores white society and culture, the reason why he lives in Woodcrest. Ruckus claims to like the smell of white people, saying they smell like "lemon juice and Pledge furniture cleaner." Despite Woodcrest's newfound acceptance of different ethnicities, the neighborhood apparently has no quarrel with Uncle Ruckus' racist beliefs. Ruckus can be seen employed in a variety of places performing a number of blue-collar jobs. He at one point joined the police force after turning down a 7-figure settlement after wrongfully being shot at 118 times, claiming that the officers "were simply doing their job." (Even after he becomes an officer they still beat him on the pretext that "He has a gun.") As an officer, he promised to make every black man's life as miserable as he possibly could ("The Block is Hot"). Ruckus became an evangelist after dreaming of going to "White Heaven," preaching that black people must hate their blackness and love the white man to receive entrance into heaven ("The Passion of the Ruckus").
The beginning of this episode is also one of the few moments throughout the series that Uncle Ruckus admits, or even suggests, that he is or might be black. The episodes starts with Ruckus knocking on Robert's front door with the news that he's been diagnosed with cancer. He proceeds to attempt to describe the specific type of cancer he's been diagnosed with (in Latin, which is one made up for the show) but fails to do so stating " ... or some other big word my small negro brain and big lips can't pronounce."
Uncle Ruckus has had a vast variety of jobs over the two seasons of the show, and is ubiquitous in nearly every working establishment on the show. In the banned episode "Uncle Ruckus' Reality Show", he claimed to work 32 jobs over the course of the week and wakes at 4:45 a.m every morning for work. It's also shortly after this hour that Ruckus applies a homemade topical ointment of "bleach and sulfur" in order to treat his self-diagnosed re-vitaligo as he "likes to think it works." He attributes this homemade ointment as preventing him from "getting any darker these past few years." Despite holding a self-proclaimed 32 jobs, Ruckus continues to live a less than modest life, as shown by his not abused, yet not maintained, home and truck.
In the first episode, The Garden Party, Ruckus appears to have an alcohol problem as he's seen drinking from a hidden flask several time throughout the episode, but appears to have this under control for the rest of the series.
Although nearly 70 years old and obese, Ruckus is an advanced practitioner of martial arts and has shown himself to be Huey's equal on multiple occasions. He has mastery with the nunchakus and is capable of incredible acrobatics along with his martial skills.
In the series' second season (first heard in "...Or Die Trying"), a sound-alike variation on the tuba piece "Jabba's Theme" (from Return of the Jedi) is used as a musical theme for Uncle Ruckus, drawing a parallel between the grossly fat and repulsive Star Wars character and the similarly repellent Ruckus.
Robert Freeman is the closest thing to a friend that Uncle Ruckus has, though Robert rebukes Ruckus' racist notions. For example, a friendly match of checkers between them ended sourly after Ruckus made supremacist remarks. Ruckus was supportive of Robert during his training for a rematch with Col. Stinkmeaner and was the only one besides Riley who praised him when he won the fight (killing Stinkmeaner) in "Granddad's Fight". Despite all this, Uncle Ruckus claims their friendship is a pretense ("The Trial of R. Kelly") and that he still sees him as a "nigga." Also, in "The Real", Uncle Ruckus was one of the "homeless people" that Robert was "housing", the other being Jazmine.
Uncle Ruckus said that he resented Huey ever since he came into Woodcrest during the episode "...Or Die Trying." For Huey's part, he seems to ignore Uncle Ruckus' racist rantings, knowing that debating with the man will do little good. However, when Ruckus challenged him to a martial arts showdown (with the nunchaku he forgot in the theatre bathroom), Huey faced him in hand-to-hand combat. The victor of these fights is unknown. It should be noted that both fights appear to be references to Fist of the North Star.
Ruckus tolerates the Dubois, mostly due to Sarah's presence. He seems to think that Sarah is with Tom out of pity rather than love, and believes that Sarah taught him how to read ("Tom, Sarah and Usher"). He doesn't think much of Jazmine due to her half-black status, calling her a "mulatto" in a pejorative manner and a "little half and half." In a moment of relative kindness, he refers to her as a "nice little mixed-breed girl." In a rare moment he managed to single-handedly restore her faith in Christmas and in Santa Claus, effectively ending her crying and cheering her up ("A Huey Freeman Christmas").